Thursday, September 26, 2013

Scrapbook {Express}ions and My Mind's Eye

I am sharing a layout today created for Scrapbook {Express}ions using this month's sketch challenge from the My Mind's Eye blog. You only have a few days in the month left to complete this challenge, but if you go to the Scrapbook Express store and stock up  on My Mind's Eye products, you will be ready for next month's challenge.
Ronda Palazzari MME Sept Sketch
Here is my layout created using the sketch and My Mind's Eye Cut & Paste Collection. Loved-by-You

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Scrapbook {Express}ions

While it certainly doesn't feel like fall here in central Indiana, the Bo Bunny Autumn Song Collection, which I used on my double page sketch layout on the Scrapbook {Express}ions blog today, is filled with gorgeous fall colors. Here's to hoping we get to see some of these colors on the trees soon.
See the large Noteworthy piece I used for my title and journaling? It's really about 2" shorter than it looks on the layout. I just cut it in half and placed the two pieces behind the top and bottom of the photos to stretch the piece to work on my layout. Don't be afraid to cut and manipulate your embellishments to make them work on your layout and get more for your money.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Scrapbook {Express}ions Single Page Sketch with Memorabilia Tips

Today I am sharing a layout  on the Scrapbook {Express}ions blog created with the new My Mind's Eye Cut & Paste Collection and this month's single page sketch. 
See the strip of paper across the layout? That is the wax wrapping that the cheese came in from the cheese shop. You never know when the oddest thing you save from your travels will work perfectly on a layout, so be sure to bring everything home with you (even if your family gives you a weird look and thinks you're crazy). Fromage
I also pick up business cards whenever I see them because they are a good size for accents on your layouts. I cut a strip of the Lifestyle Crafts Grey Shape 'N Tape and adhered it along the left edge of the business card, leaving the right side of the card unattached. That way you can flip the card open to see what is on the back in case you need the information for future reference.
PhotoSheet 10x8 (DSCN2375,DSCN2374)

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Beef & Bean Burrito Soup

Since fall is just around the corner, I thought I would post a soup recipe to get you in the mood for some fall weather food. This one is quick and easy and very satisfying. You can cook it on the stovetop or put it in a crockpot and let it simmer away.

Beef & Bean Burrito Soup
4 Servings
1 lb. (90%) lean ground beef
2 Tbl. chili powder
4 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. onion powder
2 (16 oz.) cans fat free refried beans
3 cups beef broth
5 corn tortillas
chopped cilantro
4 oz. cheddar cheese, grated
1.   Spray a non-stick skillet with cooking spray and add ground beef.  Cook 4-5 minutes, or until nearly cooked through. Add chili powder, cumin, garlic powder and onion powder. Cook an additional 2 minutes.  Add remaining ingredients and  either:
       A)                 bring to a simmer over medium high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and cook for 15 minutes; or
       B)                  place everything in a  crock pot and cook for 4-5 hours on low.
2.    Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut tortillas into thin strips. Place on a baking sheet and spray with cooking spray and drizzle with salt. Toss together and bake for 5 minutes. Remove baking sheet from oven and toss again. Cook an additional 3-5 minutes or until they are brown and crispy.
3.    Taste soup and add salt, if desired. Serve soup topped with tortilla strips, cilantro and cheese.

I shared this recipe on The Ultimate Soup Recipe List. Lots of great soup recipes for you to check out there.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Grid Layouts

I recently created this layout of prairie dogs we saw in Theodore Roosevelt National Parkfor a challenge at My Scraps & More to use arrows.
The day after I created this layout, sketch #43 was posted at My Scraps & More Sketch blog. Look familiar?
So I got to work creating another layout using the sketch. I loved the english translation on the sign "visitors are invited to avoid any contact with stray dogs." I knew when I saw the sign I needed to take a picture so I could use it on a layout with photos of the stray dogs we saw all around Pompeii.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Tomato Basil Orzo Salad

I'm a little behind with my promise to post some recipes, but here is finally one in time for the tomato and basil harvest from your garden. I have some small roma tomatoes that I used and cut into thirds (the plant was labeled Roma, but they are more like small Pear tomatoes). When I came back from being gone for 3 weeks my basil plant had tripled in size, so I used the greater amount of basil since I had so much available right from my garden.

Tomato Basil Orzo Salad

2 ounces orzo pasta
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes
3 Tablespoons thinly sliced chives or green onions
1/4-1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
salt and pepper
1 Tablespoon crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup light balsamic dressing

the orzo in the chicken broth until tender according to package directions. Drain well but do not rinse. Let the pasta cool to room temperature, tossing often so it doesn't stick together.

Meanwhile, place tomatoes and green onions in a small bowl. Add salad dressing and allow to marinate for an hour or more, gently tossing every 15 minutes or so (not absolutely necessary but it gives the tomatoes a nice flavor).

When ready to serve, add the orzo and chopped basil to the tomato mixture. Add salt and pepper to taste. Toss and serve at room temperature, topping each serving with half the feta cheese.

Serves 2 (but can easily be doubled)
Adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe

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